Astrid Parker Doesn’t Fail

Berkley. (Bright Falls, Bk. 2). Nov. 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780593336427. pap. $17. LGBT ROMANCE
In the Oregon town of Bright Falls, Astrid Parker has recently canceled her wedding and is experiencing a downturn in her interior design business. Jordan Everwood, a carpenter who is experiencing trauma in her own life, is also suffering an upset in her career. They are forced to work together to renovate Jordan’s family inn for a TV show that they hope will help them both get back in control of their lives. Astrid has come up with a design to modernize the inn, but Jordan wants to retain the history and unique design of the place. The producers encourage them to play up the tension between them, and they both have to decide what they want and what they’re willing to do to get it. The story takes a little while to pick up speed, but once it does, the characters and relationship feel balanced and fresh.
VERDICT Blake’s second “Bright Falls” novel (after Delilah Green Doesn’t Care) is a good fit for readers looking for stories involving thirtysomething characters, bisexuality, strong friendships, and character growth. Be aware that parental emotional abuse is a significant element of the plot.
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